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Textmetrics Press Release: ‘Spellchecker on steroids’ prevents discrimination in the recruitment market

Technology successfully applied at international companies Arcadis and Randstad

Arnhem, the Netherlands, 14 January 2020 – Exclusion in the recruitment market is a persistent problem, with a increasing labor shortage at the same time. However, technology based on artificial intelligence can lead to more inclusiveness and diversity in the recruitment & selection process. To determine whether companies unconsciously discriminate on their corporate websites or in their job advertisements, a “website inclusion check” has been designed. With this technology, a “spelling checker on steroids”, from Textmetrics, international companies Arcadis and Randstad have taken further steps to hire a more diverse group of people and prevent exclusion. At Arcadis, this has led to 10 percent more female candidates in job applications.

Research from Textmetrics, a company specialised in content consistency technology, shows that many companies exclude certain groups in their communications. This often happens unconsciously. Companies intend to hire more women, older or less literate employees or employees with a non- Western background, but these groups apply much less for their vacancies. The root cause often lies in the way these companies write their vacancy texts. This can also have consequences for companies in the long term.


Dutch government plans legislation

For example, the Dutch government has plans to fine companies that discriminate in the search for personnel. This fine can amount to a maximum of 4,500 euro per case. Also fines can even be made public. Companies therefore have to make plans and show how they combat discrimination and have to keep records on how they prevent making a distinction based on background, gender or age when recruiting and selecting staff.


Inclusion check

Because in many cases companies do not realise in which ways they could discriminate, Textmetrics now offers the “Website Inclusion Check”. This is based on smart technology to prevent discrimination in company websites and through job advertisements. The technology uses artificial intelligence to prevent emotion from human action. The A.I. uses emotionless algorithms that recognise (unconscious) discrimination. The Website Inclusion Check supports recruiters and other creators of business content to appeal to the right target group by using the right word choice that fits the target group. Ultimately, this allows companies to appeal to a larger audience.


In practice: Arcadis and Randstad

That companies are in need of Textmetrics technology is proven by the interest of an international company such as Arcadis. Arcadis is a technically oriented organization with a male-dominated corporate culture. Company vacancies did not include enough inclusiveness and therefore female candidates hardly applied to vacant jobs. That is why Arcadis started a project on diversity and inclusiveness. Jochem Beltman, Arcadis recruitment: “We are trying to get the company more diverse. The technology of Textmetrics coaches our recruiters during the writing process on inclusion and thus ensures a more diverse group of applicants. The use of more “inclusive” language resulted in no less than 10 percent more female candidates for our job applications”. International recruitment agency Randstad also successfully applies the technology. Preventing exclusion is one of Randstad’s priorities. With this technology, Randstad is even better able to achieve this.


About Textmetrics

Textmetrics, a Arnhem, the Netherlands based young tech-company specialised in content consistency, enables organizations through its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) to centrally control and continuously improve the effectiveness of their online and offline texts. Powered by machine learning and artificial intelligence, Textmetrics assists with real-time suggestions to write compelling content that persuades target audiences (eg. customer acquisition, personnel recruitment) and enhances brand loyalty.


For more information:

Marcel Leeman, CEO Textmetrics


T: +31 6 37192984

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